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Why doesn't the industry portray life as it is instead of creating an image people seem to strive for?

Why doesn't the industry portray life as it is instead of creating an image people seem to strive for?

The industry continues to portray young beautiful models (mostly young white women)who have bodies and wear cloths that are unobtainable by most of their audience. How can we develop an attractive look that is obtainable?

All answers/questions are welcomed

Thank you!

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    Feb 11 2013: Why would I take any notice of an add that looks like what I can see out my window? Why is reality TV so unreal? Because reality is so boring. I'm already experiencing reality 24/7, I don't need more of it.
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    Feb 11 2013: If I want to sell my car I will make it look as good as possible. When I go to look at a new car at the dealer I won't find dirt on hood, or crumbs on the seat. It will be sparkling and bright, looking as good as it possibly can, better than it ever will look in real life! Plain brown wrappers don't sell. We want to be shown what we want things to look like, not what our life actually looks like with the scratches, dents, extra pounds, and wrinkled exterior. It's fundamental marketing.
    • Feb 11 2013: Thank you for your response!

      Your point is well taken! I think its important to recognize that car dealers aren't starving themselves, or developing psychological issues in order to make a sale. I think this conversation should be as much for the models as well as the audience who buys into the look. Ultimately, the models suffer and their story is never heard. How can we have a collected effort to create images that wont take us away from the everyday life at the same time look good enough to sell?
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        Feb 11 2013: That's a tough one sir. Everyday doesn't sell.
      • Feb 12 2013: I have met women who are very good looking and could become a model just by choosing to do so. I asked, and found that they chose not to become a model. Every model has that same choice. I refuse to accept any responsibility for their choice. If these women are being exploited, they can end it whenever they choose.
        • Feb 12 2013: I was continually told, for 20 years from aged 15years :
          "You should be a model"... because I am 6 feet tall, naturally slim, with extended legs. (this is actually in part because I have Marfan Syndrome, although I never knew).

          I knew I never would, nor wanted to. Sometimes I would try and explain, sometimes silent. I am very glad I didn't, especially in the early 70s or 80s. I think it can be quite a gruelling lifestyle. It is not necessarily an advantage to fit the 'model' image. One is prone to be projected upon, both male and female.
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    Feb 11 2013: I agree with Kate.....a certain image is created and marketed with the intention of selling ALL the products that go with that image...cloths, make-up, diets, etc. The industry will continue to produce what the public buys, so I believe the idea of change needs to come from many different segments of our society.

    We now have "plus" size models and cloths, and all models are not as skinny as "Twiggy", who started the "skinny" fad. We're beginning to see make-up manufactures producing different colors of make-up with many different textures, for different skin types. Are we beginning to see a tiny little change?
    • Feb 11 2013: Thank you for your response! I would definitely agree, there has been a shift in what is considered beautiful. How do we continue in this effort? How do we support the segments that will have the most effect?
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        Feb 11 2013: Thanks for your response too Michael:>)

        I believe awareness is the first step in changing anything. The fact that we are talking about these issues here on TED is a step forward in my perception. I believe we need to continue to empower people with confidence and security in themselves, so people are not so easily led by marketing. I believe if one is confident in oneself, we generally won't spend time and money trying to look like everyone else. We may be more content to "be" who and what we are:>) What do you think?
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        Feb 11 2013: So Michael, your question asks..."Why doesn't the industry portray life as it is instead of creating an image people seem to strive for?"

        Some folks, often young people, "strive for" the image that is presented as what we "should" be striving for, to be accepted, beautiful, successful....bla....bla....bla.

        If the industry can convince enough people that they are "right", and we "should" all strive for this presented image, they kind of have people in the palm of their hands as far as they not?

        I believe that what needs to be stressed, is good physical and emotional health, including confidence and self esteem.
      • Feb 12 2013: If you want people to accept people "warts and all" I suggest that you support efforts to legalize and popularize public nudity. IMO our conflation of nudity and sexuality is mentally and emotionally unhealthy.

        When a society makes it illegal for people to walk down a public street without hiding their true appearance behind clothes, that society does not fully accept people as themselves. In a free society people should be free to be just themselves.

        Most people never think about the nudity laws, but the more I think about them, the more insidious they seem. Not only do we not portray life as it is, we cannot live life looking as ourselves.
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    Feb 11 2013: Personally I enjoy looking at beautiful people. It pushes a pleasure button in my head. Perhaps the businesses want to associate their product with that pleasure button.

    Ordinary looking people get their day in the sun all the time, they have their photographs in the newspaper when they are involved in a news event.
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    • Feb 11 2013: This is very true!

      Should there be regulations (imposed by government)? Or should the industry be responsible for the damages it creates and self regulate? We are all free to think and act as we chose, even if it hurts us. But should we be able to affect the judgement of others without penalty?